Wounded Soul

 

full body in abaya in elevator

I stand in the elevator

at the end my work day

and observe the image

that stares blankly back at me

from the mirrored doors.

The snaps on my Abaya have popped open. First the bottom half when I got out of the car. Then the top third when I slung my backpack over my shoulder. Now, only the two in the center – the two snaps between bellybutton and pubic bone – are still stuck together holding this gloom, this, this obscuration, this dark umbrage they call “protection” vaguely in place. I notice that I look the same as I feel: beat. exhausted. defeated.

I do not feel feel protected.

in elevator with abaya 2

The baby blue camisole, damp from sweat, shows my form:

cleavage2-inch cleavage, a deep slit that divides me – left and right – straight as an arrow, bold as an arrogant threat;

2 sagging bulges, heavier than the polka-dotted brazier I chose to hold them in today;

soft, swollen belly, vulnerable, but proud of its efforts – mindless laboring to keep me alive;

shadows of stilt-like legs that hold heavy, aching hips that brazenly reveal their shape, even from behind the black curtain I wear to work.

My eyes move up to take in the image of my face:

tired self

 

Cheeks flush; freckles faded from winter’s gentler sun; dark bags sit under my eyes.
Eyes. Green. More green than normal today.

Hmmm, kinda pretty, I muse.

 

 

tired eye

 

I lean in closer

to my image

in the door

to better examine my eyes.

Shit!

The wounded soul is showing!

 

Thank God I’ve arrived.

The fifth floor.

The doors open.

 

I deliberately blink my eyes, rapidly fluttering the sticky black lashes.

Yes, I’m trying to conjure up some wind.

Yes, I’m trying to push the wounded soul back into hiding.

As I plod the dark hallway to my apartment, I exhale heavily with each left step

(breath rebounds as right foot thuds, like a heavy limp),

cleavage 2

 

and I push

the wounded soul

back down

into Cleavage Canyon.

 

 

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